Français

Script 75.6

Notes to broadcasters

As we heard in part I of this series (Package 75, script 5 – Learning about local signs of drought), there are various traditional and local methods that indicate forthcoming drought and that can serve as early weather warnings. What do we as communicators do? We need to alert farmers about these indicators, and share relevant information with each other on how to respond in time to ensure food security. In this second part of our drama on signs of weather change, titled Preparing for drought, we will discuss some practices used by farmers when confronted with drought. Please come along as we hear about challenges faced by the newly-weds Ango and Amariya.

Script

STRONG WIND BLOWING. QUICK KNOCK ON DOOR.

Baba:
(OFF) Yes, who is that?

Ango:
(ON) Baba, it’s me Ango.

DOOR QUICKLY OPENS AND CLOSES.

Baba:
Come in Ango it’s cold outside. And by the way what are you doing in my house? You just got married!

Ango:
Baba wisdom comes with age, it is you, our elders, who told us that wisdom cannot be bought at the market. I have come to you for advice.

Baba:
Well spoken my son. Before you continue, let me ask you, how is our wife?

Ango:
Baba Amariya is well. She sends her love

Baba:
Oh! I am forgetting my manners. What do I offer you?

Ango:
Baba not yet. Isn’t it you who says when you see a frog in broad daylight, it’s either after something or something is after it?

Baba:
Hm! So, what are you after Ango?

Ango:
Baba I just got married…

Baba:
Have you forgotten Ango, that I was there?

Ango:
(Confused) Well, now I have a wife but I also have new problems. We are already running out of food in the house – almost all the maize I kept for planting during the rains has been eaten up.

Baba:
How did you do that?

Ango:
My wife and I do not know how to manage. We have been having a lot of visitors since our marriage. And they have eaten all our grain. We cannot risk eating our seed too.

Baba:
It is well my son, it is well.

Ango:
But Baba I’m worried. The few stems of cassava I tried to plant are not doing well. It has been too dry.

Baba:
I don’t want to tell you this Ango. But we are surely going to have a drought this year.

Ango:
How do you know?

Baba:
The long harmattan season and the disappearance of the birds tell me what is to come. The rains will be late in coming this year, and when they come they will be very short.

Ango:
What can we do?

Baba:
We must be prepared to plant fast-maturing crops…..

Ango:
(interrupting) Fast maturing crops?

Baba:
Yes some maize varieties are fast maturing. We should also plant guinea corn and beans to cover the soil and conserve moisture. We should select plants that do not require too much water.

Ango:
So I should not plant new cassava cuttings?

Baba:
No. Not at this time. The rains will be too short for them to survive. Even for the other crops we need to spread our cow dung and compost on the garden to conserve moisture. We must work hard because there wil be no time to waste once the rains do start.

Ango:
Baba I have a lot to learn from you.

Baba:
I am always at your disposal. My house is your house.

Ango:
I have to go now. Thank you very much Baba.

DOOR OPENS WIND BLOWING FROM OUTSIDE.

Baba:
(ON) Greet Amariya for me.

DOOR CLOSES

Ango:
(OFF) Baba I will.

Baba:
Who! What a wind (rubs his hands together for warmth) Mero! Mero!! Where are you?

Mero:
(OFF) Baba Asabe — I’m coming — I am in the kitchen.

OUTER DOOR OPENS OFF

Mero:
Baba I’m here.

Baba:
Did you know that Ango was here?

Ango:
How is he? Has he put on weight?

Baba:
For someone married for just two weeks I think he has put on a reasonable amount of weight.

Mero:
Ah! Thank God.

Baba:
I called you in for something more important.

Mero:
What can that be Baba?

Baba:
We need to help the newlyweds.

Mero:
Baba how?

Baba:
We need to go to each household in the village and collect one basin of fast maturing maize seed for the newlyweds.

Mero:
So the drought has arrived.

Baba:
Yes Mero it has.

Announcer:
Thanks to the signs of drought, Baba and Mero were able to rally round and make plans to help those in need like Ango and Amariya. Do you have a have a similar system of “Help” in your village? One thing is true and that is that disasters, natural or human, should bring us together. We would love to hear from you.

BRING UP THEME MUSIC AND HOLD FOR 3 SECONDS AND FADE

Acknowledgements

  • Contributed by the African Radio Drama Association (ARDA), Plot 211, Muri Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria. Email: info@ardabroadcasting.org
  • Reviewed by Professor Helen Hambly Odame, Rural Extension Studies, University of Guelph Program undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
  1. One of the strategies for combatting drought mentioned in this script involves planting improved and traditional varieties of early-maturing and/or drought-tolerant maize. For more information about maize varieties please see: MaizeLink or contact:
    Dr. Manish N. Raizada
    Plant Agriculture
    University of Guelph, Canada
    Email: raizada@uoguelph.ca
  2. Guinea corn is also mentioned in the script. Guinea corn is a form of sorghum (Sorghum guineese) more suited to more humid areas.